Kazuki Takamatsu Feature | Highlark

Kazuki Takamatsu paints uncomplicated scenes- pearly subject, black background- that emit a sonic pulsing, begging to be figured out. He experiments with the female figure, rendering soft, white silhouettes, haunting and ethereal in their glow. The paintings are immortalized thanks to a stereoscopic quality that Takamatsu is able to give to a two dimensional surface. He has brought things into a reverse perspective, turning software-like images back over to the human hand.

An overarching theme in Takamatsu’s body of work is that of the human relationship to the world we built. Nothing in his artwork is explicit, and ideas are implied, whispered in white. The sprinkled-in cityscapes and depictions of overhead lamps in some of the pieces point to our (mis)understanding of the man-made environment we’re born into. The images themselves, and their digitized quality pose a question of our interaction with technology- just who are the machines? Those depicting a singular figure feel lonesome and wispy, as if the subject was withering away. Those with multiple figures, milling around, interacting, blending into eachother, feel lonesome in a different way, like the last droplets of life in a computer, they are miscalculations of a perfect system.

Takamatsu’s use of geometry is calculated- spirals fall evenly, and shapes coalesce in an eerie harmony. I am especially in awe of his portrayals of water- though milky and smooth, it ripples like a still lake, carrying a telling quality that is not easy to capture. Another detail I noticed while reviewing his work as a whole was the ever present hum reverberating through the pieces- there are certain artists who touch on more than the visual surface, stimulating a bat-like perception of imagined sound that I hear as the beating of a mechanical heart.

In Kazuki Takamatsu’s work, the light source is generated within the piece, illuminating the white and darkening the black. The content is wide open to interpretation, with hints of erotica, the animate, the inanimate, displays of humanity, symmetry, and the world we live in. The overall effect is not something i’ve seen before, and spurs immediate interest in the technique and subject matter of the artist.


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